Royal Ascot Hats
Royal Ascot Hats 2023
Royal Ascot starts on the 20th of June this year and lasts for five glorious days. It’s the height of the English summer season and the perfect opportunity to wear a Vivien Sheriff hat.
Ascot racecourse was established in 1711 by Queen Anne and has since seen eleven British monarchs attend the race meeting. The summer meeting officially becoming a Royal week in 1911 and was attended by King George V. Royal Ascot is now known around the world as the event that marks the height of the British summer season.
As tradition dictates, on each day of the meeting, at 2.00pm, the King and other members of the Royal family are driven along part of the course in horse drawn landaus. This year will be King Charles III’s first Royal Ascot as monarch. In previous years Queen Elizabeth was eagerly awaited as bets were placed on the colour of the hat she would be wearing for Royal Ascot. We trust this tradition will be maintained with Camilla, who’s title will then be Queen after the coronation.
There are four enclosures at Royal Ascot, and if you are fortunate enough to be going you need to adhere to the dress code for each part of the course at Royal Ascot – here is our guide.
The Royal Enclosure.
This part of Ascot is for members only, or those personally invited by a member. Women should wear a hat or headpiece that has a base of 10cm (4 inches) or more is allowed. Fortunately, every piece that we have designed at Vivien Sheriff falls into this bracket so you can rest assured that you will be suitably dressed in a Vivien Sheriff headpiece. Be warned, a small fascinator is not permitted.
Queen Annes Enclosure. For women a hat, headpiece or a fascinator should be worn at all times. The style is formal throughout the day, so strapless dresses and tops are not permitted, and your mid-riff should be covered at all times. Any women who opt for a trouser suit must wear them at full length. It is optional for girls who are seventeen and under to wear a hat, headpiece or fascinator.
Village Enclosure. As in the Queen Anne enclosure, a hat, fascinator or headpiece should be worn at all times. Girls seventeen and under are not required to wear a hat, but why miss the opportunity! The dress code is formal whilst in the enclosure. Note the area is grassed, so wedges or block heeled shoes are preferable to stilettos. Trainers are not permitted.
This area tends to be the most popular and busiest area of the course, so you’ll want to stand out! This is your chance to wear one of our statement hats to make you feel confident, elevated and elegant whilst in the enclosure. It’s your moment to celebrate and promote British millinery.
Windsor Enclosure. This is the most relaxed area of the course with no official dress standards. However, it is still Royal Ascot, and part of the fun is being stylishly dress and looking your best – the perfect occasion to wear one of our hats or fascinators.
Royal Ascot 2023
With the King’s Coronation on the 6th of May and Royal Ascot starting on the 20th of June, it’s going to be one big celebration of all things British. With Royal Ascot 2023 being the first time King Charles will attend as monarch, women attending Royal Ascot will want to celebrate the occasion through their impeccable dress style and their choice of headwear.
At Vivien Sheriff we have noted that many race goers will be wearing red, white, or blue pieces for Royal Ascot. But, equally bright combinations and pastels will be just as popular, and we all agree that in this momentous year, the more celebratory the better!
Royal Ascot Ladies Day - The term dates back to 1823, when an anonymous poet described Thursday at Ascot as "Ladies' Day... when the women, like angels, look sweetly divine” is a perennial favourite of racing festivals across the world, but Royal Ascot takes the tradition to new heights of elegance and glamour. On the third day of Royal Ascot, guests, and ladies in particular, are encouraged to come dressed to the nines and enjoy a day of racing in style. It’s the day when millinery masterpieces and high fashion take centre stage around racing’s most elite horses in the historic Gold Cup.
Hats for the Royal Enclosure
You’ll want to look stylish and impeccably dressed, and at Vivien Sheriff we have a section on our website dedicated to hats for Royal Ascot. We welcome personal visits by our customers, to our Wiltshire studio, for a fitting and advice on which styles best suit different face shapes. This also gives our clients the chance to colour match an outfit to a bespoke made hat. We even offer virtual appointments with our design team is you are based overseas or cannot make the journey to our studio.
Here are three recommendations to wear for the Royal enclosure.
Thyme Celebrating the beauty and variety of the English countryside with this Vivien Sheriff large sinamay disc hat with a wildflower display. Absolutely stunning and unique. Definitely a ladies designer hat for Royal Ascot.
Pimpernel A staggeringly beautiful and creative ripple sinamay disc with a celebration spray of pheasant and peacock feathers. All eyes are on you when you wear this quintessentially British designer hat.
Pankhurst iA dramatic Royal Ascot headpiece! Handcrafted petals are individually cut, dyed, and shaped to build up this superb flower, which cleverly gives the impression of movement. Combined with fine silk abaca and placed upon a sturdy and subtle headband for additional security, this sensational piece is ideal for Royal Ascot.
Hellebore A statement headpiece; two-tone fuchsia and vibrant mandarin. A bright showstopper that possesses an elevated style and will turn all heads at Royal Ascot.
Wave Royal The ultimate in Royal Ascot hats! Wave Royal is a classic Vivien Sheriff design, this elegant headpiece mirrors the wing of a bird in motion. Hand cut, and shaped royal blue feathers are positioned and styled, then finished with an intricate lace reverse and a small sprinkle of Swarovski crystals.
Hats for The Queen Anne or Village Enclosure
These two enclosures allow for more freedom of expression as you are permitted to wear a fascinator as an alternative to a hat, so browse our selection of fascinators that are on our website or look through the Spring summer section on our website. We send hats throughout the UK free of charge, but if you prefer to have a fitting in person, or a virtual meeting, please make an appointment by calling 01725 512983
Here are our top five choices for these enclosures.
Cosmos; Become the centre of the universe in this large sinamay hat with a silk straw sash. Parasisal trim adorned with an array of goose and peacock feathers creating a shimmering feathered night blue headpiece. English millinery, styling and creativity in one hat.
Sweet Charity: A royal crown of tonal flowers and silk abaca fabric sit centrally on a small sinamay base. Finished with a full-face veil and held to the head on a
neutral tone headband, a wonderful fascinator headpiece. The perfect style to wear as a race day headpiece.
Nightingale A sculptural and highly elegant feather fascinator with an embellishment of plumage, high rising quills and gentle veiling. Perfect as Royal Ascot fascinator.
Teasel An outrageous display of pink plumage is on show with this sinamay pink disc hat, all show-cased with a vibrant display of goose and pheasant feathers. Creativity at its most colourful with this saucer hat. All hues of pink and coral provide the perfect pink hat for Royal Ascot.
High Society. Taking inspiration from the green ascot turf, one of our most popular medium disc shapes, trimmed with fans of hand dyed raffia and stunning faux orchid flowers.
Shaped quills add height and a pop of colour in this floral and green Royal Ascot hat.
A much more relaxed dress style, but never-the-less an excellent opportunity to wear a hat or fascinator and be part of Royal Ascot. We have a wonderful section of ready to wear pieces in our Vixen, by VS, section. If budget is a consideration, and you’d still like to wear a hat by Vivien Sheriff, one of the UK’s leading milliners, you can book an appointment, in person or online, to rent a hat from us for the event.
Here are five recommendations from the Vixen ready-to-wear section.
How beautiful is this creation? A graceful and sophisticated race hat, styled with an angled brim and adorned with fabric flowers and a stem of feathers. This colourway is an oyster, pearl like, blush pink - simply stunning!
Charm, grace, and elegance are all blended into this eye-catching headpiece. A down brim hat with feather flowers, dotted veiling, and a single quill. Available in a rich crimson aubergine or powder blue.
This has been created from a sequin beret disc, with a sinamay trim, finished with a combination of goose feather and ostrich quills. It comes in two colours: a black disc fascinator and the other is in a blush colourway.
The perfect feather fascinator is summed up with this small straw button beret with goose feathers. Colourful and playful, this feather fascinator hat, designed in our Wiltshire studio, will enhance any summer outfit. Available in seven colourways
Stunning summer fruit colours dazzle from this small hand shaped parasisal straw disc with a bow of silk abaca and veiling. Opulence and understatement combine to make this a must have designer headpiece.
Royal Ascot will be a showcase event for British design and style. Vivien Sheriff sits resolutely at the forefront of contemporary British millinery with her bespoke and luxurious designs. Whether your UK based or visiting from overseas to attend this year’s Royal Ascot, take the opportunity to wear one of our effortlessly stylish hats at Royal Ascot 2023.